Gulbarga Gulbarga Fort
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Gulbarga, Karnataka Overview

Gulbarga, now known as Kalburgi, is located in Northern Karnataka and is known for its beautiful historical forts and northern Karnataka cuisine. A major administrative centre for its district, it is also an educational hub housing the sought after Gulbarga University. Gulbarga was historically ruled by Hindu and Muslim dynasties, the remnants of which can still be seen today. Gulbarga’s heritage is an embodiment of it’s very rich and diverse Sufi culture. Explore its stunning Islamic architecture and Sufi culture by visiting the Khwaja Banda Nawaz Dargah and the Jama Masjid. It also has the famous Sharana Basaveshwara Temple built to commemorate the eminent Hindu philosopher, Shri Sharana Basaveshwara. Watch the Gulbarga city come alive during the Cars Festival celebrating the teachings of the Hindu Saint Sharana Basaveshwara in March and the Urs festival in August marking the death anniversary of Sufi philosopher Khwaja Bande Nawaz, both of whom preached inclusion irrespective of caste, colour or gender.

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Buddha Vihar

Best places to visit in Gulbarga Buddha Vihar
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Inaugurated by former President Mrs. Prathibha Patil and His Holiness The Dalai Lama, the Buddha Vihar is a very peaceful and serene place in Gulbarga. Located inside the Gulbarga University, the Buddha Vihar is built in traditional Buddhist architecture taking inspiration from prominent Buddhist centres such as Sarnath and Ajanta. It is surrounded by trees and dozens of birds making it a beautiful and calm place for one to meditate. It is one of the cleanest areas in Gulbarga, and it has a meditation hall in the cellar which is very serene and quiet. There is no entry between 12 PM to 4 PM so make sure you plan your visit accordingly.

Gulbarga Fort

Best Places to visit in Gulbarga Gulbarga Fort
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A great place for history lovers, the Gulbarga Fort and its famous mosque, the Jama Masjid is a must-visit. The mosque is an example of unique Islamic architecture as it is fully enclosed on all sides. It was eventually enlarged in 1347 by the Bahmani Dynasty with the addition of mosques, palaces, tombs, and other structures. The most significant structure within the fort is the exquisite Jama Masjid. It is constructed in beautiful Parisian style architecture with stunning domes and hundreds of arched columns supporting the structure. Take a walk through history at the Gulbarga Fort and experience the pacific prayers at the mosque which is functional even today.

Sharana Basaveshwara Temple

Best places to visit in Gulbarga Sharana Basaveshwara Temple
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This ancient temple in Gulbarga was built to commemorate the Hindu saint and philosopher, Shri Sharana Basaveshwara and his contributions towards the Hinduism. But the temple is famous for more than just the shrine. People of all faiths from all over the world converge to the sprawling temple complex to witness the historic car festival in March to commemorate the death anniversary for the Saint Sharanabasaveshwara. Almost every household in Gulbarga district observes it as a ritual to fast from dawn-to-dusk during the car festival followed by a delicious traditional dinner comprising of traditional Holige and Huggi. You can also witness the silver plate used by the saint (Prasada Battala) during the car festival and get a glimpse of the sandalwood cover used for keeping the Linga, the Linga Sajjike. Experience the generosity of Sharanabasaveshwara people by enjoying a free meal at the temple cooked with grains donated by local farmers.

Khwaja Bande Nawaz Dargah

Best places to visit in Gulbarga Jama Masjid
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If you are looking for a tranquil, spiritual experience, the Khwaja Bande Nawaz Dargah is just the place. Challenging conventional tradition, the Dargah does not discriminate entry based on caste, religion or gender. The Dargah was built to commemorate the Hazrat Khwaja Banda Nawaz Gesu Daraz, the famous Sufi saint in India who preached the same beliefs of non-discrimination. Explore the historic architecture, visit the tomb of Hazrat Daraz and his family and visit the library below the dargah. At the grave of his daughter, there is a neem tree whose leaves are considered to be holy. Upon eating the leaves, the locals believe that your wishes would be full filled.

The Khwaja Bande Nawaz Dargah also hosts the annual Urs festival held in the month of August at the tomb of Khwaja Bande Nawaz. Thousands of pilgrims throng the dargah to commemorate his death anniversary of the saint. It is a significant and popular festival of Gulbarga where the whole city comes alive with prayers, lights and food.

Best Time To Visit Gulbarga

Best time to visit Gulbarga Jama Masjid
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Gulbarga has a tropical climate making the summers very hot and unbearable for sight-seeing and travelling. The monsoons bring in some relief and transform the city in July. The heavy rains set against the historical monuments in the town is a sight to behold. Winters are the best time to visit Gulbarga as the climate is cold and chilly making it ideal for exploring its many attractions. The average temperature in Gulbarga is 27.2 C.

Gulbarga in Summer (March to June)

The summer season in Gulbarga is scorching hot and arid. May is the hottest month with temperatures skyrocketing to as high as 40 C. Tourists generally avoid visiting during this time as it is locally not advised to step out in the scorching heat. This rough climate lasts until the end of June.

The Car Festival takes place in March at the Sharana Basaveshwara Temple which is thronged by thousands of pilgrims and state dignitaries for this fortnight-long festival to commemorate the death anniversary of the Saint Sharanabasaveshwar.

Monsoons in Gulbarga (July - September)

The monsoon season in Gulbarga is marked by heavy rainfall throughout the city. Be prepared for a rise in humidity if you are travelling during this season. The maximum rain during the monsoon season is 750 mm. The monsoons last till the end of September.

Also, visit the annual Urs festival held in August to commemorate the death anniversary of Khwaja Bande Nawaz. It is a significant festival of Gulbarga and is thronged by thousands of pilgrims from around the country.

Winter in Gulbarga (October - March)

The winter months between October to March is the best time to visit Gulbarga. The climate is pleasing and crisp, making it the ideal time to visit the various historical monuments Gulbarga has to offer. Ensure you pack a warm jacket or two as it can get quite chilly in the night.

Food At Gulbarga

Gulbarga exemplifies the famously healthy North Karnataka food. As the land is quite dry for crops like rice, the people of the region resort to other options such as millets and whole grains. The staple diet is generally spicier as compared to the rest of Karnataka, and there is a distinct use of jaggery in the desserts and sweets.

Gulbarga's Famous Foods

1. Jolada Rotti - A flatbread made out of millet jowar or bajra. Jolada Rotti is a standard staple food for the local Gulbarga people. It is usually served with spicy curry or spiced peanut powder.

2. Bele or Kaalu Palya Dal - Made by cooking lentils with greens such as spinach and dill and seasoned with onions, ginger, garlic and spices.

3. Enne-Gai / Tumbu-Gai - Traditionally prepared with small aubergine bulbs that are stuffed ground peanut, ground sesame and seasonings.

4. Local favourite sweets and desserts include the Holige Roti - flatbread pancake stuffed with jaggery and chickpeas served with mango pulp on the side, Shenga Unde (peanut and jaggery laddus/balls) and Godi Hugg (a sweet made with wheat and jaggery)

5. Malpuri - Malpuri is quite famous sweet of Gulbarga and tastes best when eaten fresh and hot. Buy it freshly made off the stove at 4:00 PM every day from the local sweet shops.


Top restaurants in Gulbarga


1. Nawaaz Restaurant

Visit this family-friendly place for South Indian Thalis, excellent vegetarian options and mouth-watering desserts. Enjoy the quaint settings and satisfy your hunger with delicious koftas and their famous South thalis.

Cost for 2: INR 200
Address: Darga Road, Kalaburagi
Phone: +91-9448020657
Timings: 9:00 AM - 10:00 PM

2. Radha's Kitchen

Located inside the Kandoor Mall, this laid-back restaurant offers simple food for a family friendly meal. The staff at Radha's Kitchen instantly make you feel at home and is paradise for vegetarians.

Cost for 2: INR 150
Address: Kandoor Mall, Shambhognlli, Kalaburagi
Phone: +91-9342090909
Timings: 9:30 AM - 10:00 PM

3. Galaxy Restaurant

An excellent stop for lunch, this place is a paradise for biryani lovers and vegetarians alike. Enjoy non-vegetarian starters and experience the famous hospitality of the local Gulbarga people.

Cost for 2: INR 300
Address: Garden Road, Mahaveer Nagar, Khuba Plot, Brhampur, Kalaburagi, Karnataka 585105
Phone: 099015 70621
Timings: 12:00 AM - 11:00 PM

How To Reach Gulbarga

Gulbarga is a major administrative centre in North Karnataka and is extremely well connected by road and train. Local buses and autos are popular modes for transport within the city.

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